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Rajya Sabha adjourned till 2 p.m. amid protests

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Rajya Sabha20180404125719_l

New Delhi, April 4 (IANS) The Rajya Sabha’s proceedings were again disrupted on Wednesday amid vociferous protests by opposition parties including the Congress, TDP and AIADMK over various issues forcing Chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu to adjourn the House till 2 p.m.

As soon as the House met for the day, the newly elected members from Rajasthan, Odisha, Karnataka, Telangana and Uttar Pradesh took oath of office.

Soon after, members from the TDP, AIADMK and Congress besides others trooped near the Chairman’s podium shouting slogans such as ‘Save Andhra Pradesh’, ‘Narendra Modi Dalit Virodhi’ and ‘We demand Cauvery board’.

The TDP and AIADMK members displayed placards in support of their demand.

Naidu urged the agitating members to raise their issues after laying down of the paper on the table of the House. But his appeal was in vein.

The Congress members were protesting against the government over a Supreme Court order diluting the provisions of the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. They accused the government of being anti-dalit.

The AIADMK and DMK members sought the immediate constitution of the Cauvery Water Management Board for division of the river water between Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

Members of the TDP held placards demanding special status for Andhra Pradesh.

As the members continued with their noisy protests, Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Vijay Goel hit out at the Congress for labelling the Modi government anti-Dalit.

"Let’s have a discussion in the House over who is anti-Dalit. You ruled the country for so long and deprived the Dalits of their basic needs. We brought many acts in favour of Dalits. You did not even give Bharat Ratna to Bhimrao Ambedkar," Goel said.

Naidu expressed his anguish over the behavior of the protesting members and appealed them to maintain order in the House so that important bills could be passed.

"A number of bills are pending… People want development and legislation. It (protests) is not going to add anything. I am ready to allow you to discuss every issue. It is unfortunate that the chair is allowing a discussion but the members are not ready. You are testing the patience of the people. The country is watching you. You are murdering democracy," he said.

As the chaos continued, Naidu adjourned the proceedings till 2 p.m.

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